The Old Pro

Rainy nights, mostly,
On sore-infested streets
Where the screaming wind
Steals your pride away
While sticky hands
Trace a curly-cue
On one exposed breast
Displayed on a platform
Of easy words that
Dribble and drop
Like foul-tastin' honey
Spoiled by too many
'Chili dog with onions, please.'
Quarter buck fifty
For a quickie
Done for luck
Faded lipstick dreams
Cradle a crown of glory
While a housewife weeps
Coffee-stained tears.

by Charlotte Ballard

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